Video: Argentina Stunned In The Opener

Sergio Aguero came off the bench to rescue a 1-1 draw for hosts Argentina against Bolivia as the Copa America got under way in thrilling fashion in La Plata.

Portugal-based Edivaldo Rojas handed Bolivia a shock lead three minutes into the second half to spark hopes of another memorable upset of their more illustrious opponents, who started the match as favourites for the South American trophy.

Bolivia famously thrashed Diego Maradona's Argentina 6-1 in World Cup qualifying in the thin air of La Paz two years ago, but this side, managed by Sergio Batista, is a different beast and this match was on Argentine soil.

Lionel Messi, regarded by many as the world's best player, again failed to translate his stunning club form with Barcelona onto the international stage. He seldom threatened to score or set up goals. The other top forward, Carlos Tevez, was also taken out of the match by Bolivia's hustling defense.

Spurred on by an expectant Estadio Ciudad de La Plata crowd, Aguero popped up to spare his side's blushes with a wonderful volley with 14 minutes remaining as the opening game of the tournament did not fail to disappoint neutral observers.

It was a stuttering start for coach Batista and host nation Argentina, which was out-hustled for much of the opening match, and did little to justify its tag as joint favorite for the South American championship, along with Brazil.

Argentina will face Colombia on Wednesday in its second group game, while Bolivia will take on Costa Rica the following day.



Related Article:
Will Argentina Reach The Promised Land?

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